Mill House Inn

31 North Main Street, East Hampton, New York 11937
Innkeeper(s): Sylvia and Gary Muller

The Mill House Inn Reopens July 1st! 28 Jun 2020, 2:07 pm

Great News! The Mill House Inn is reopening on July 1st and we are looking forward to welcoming you home. We still have availability for the July 4th Weekend!

Egypt Beach Social Distancing

Egypt Beach Social Distancing

The weather, since summer began, has been everything summer is supposed to be, and the Hamptons are entering Phase 3 of New York State’s Reopening Plan.

  • Many local Restaurants are now offering Take-Out, Outdoor Dining and Limited Indoor Seating. Please ask us for the latest updates
  • Grocery and Liquor Stores are open and taking appropriate precautions to keep both shoppers and staff safe
  • Wineries are open and many have beautiful outdoor seating. Wölffer has a Rosé Drive-Through!
  • Farms and Farmers’ Markets are filled with fresh produce and the berries are ripe!
  • Museums and Galleries, which have been offering remarkable online programming since the shutdown began, are now beginning to open their doors 
  • Drive-In and outdoor movies are popping up all over the Hamptons
  • Boutiques and Salons are now allowed to be open in certain circumstances
  • We have East Hampton Village Beach Parking Permits for our guests, and dogs are welcome before 9am and after 6pm
Mill House Inn Privets on North Main Street

Mill House Inn Privets on North Main Street

At the Mill House Inn we have spent the last three months cleaning, organizing and creating new policies and protocols to keep our staff and guests healthy and happy!

  • Check-in balances will be run on the evening prior to your arrival and your keys, etc. will be in your room to allow for contactless check-in and check-out
  • Both staff and guests will have their temperature taken when entering the inn, and will be required to wear masks in all common areas inside  – except, of course, in the comfort of your own room or suite – and whenever unable to maintain social distancing of 6 feet or more outdoors
  • Breakfast will be delivered picnic-style and left outside your door at a time of your choice (between 9am and 11am). You are free to enjoy your picnic in your room, in our lush gardens, or at the beach.( The MHI Dining Room will not be open during this period.)
  • Our famous ‘Nack Bar will not be stocked during the pandemic but we will have water, coffee, ice tea and maybe even some tasty treats available for you on request
  • We have Beach Chairs, Umbrellas and Coolers of Ice to take with you to the beach – of course they will be cleaned before and after each use
  • Our housekeepers will be constantly sanitizing all frequently touched surfaces in the common space of the inn
  • Daily housekeeping is available in your room if desired. Please let us know a window of at least 2 hours when you will be out of the room and if you wish fresh sheets or towels
  • All rooms will be deep-cleaned, and all towels and linens – including blankets, pillow protectors and duvet covers – will be cleaned in hot water and sanitizer between each guest stay
Mill House Inn July Gardens 2020

Mill House Inn July Gardens 2020

Are you hoping to travel with your extended family or a group of friends with whom you feel safe? Looking for a week, a month or even the entire season? If our Graybarn Cottage is already booked we have some other options for you:

  • Consider taking all 3 Suites in the Back House: Suite 40, Suite 31 (which share a private porch and hallway), and Suite 32 (just upstairs) – Make all the noise you want and you will not disturb any other guests!
  • Maybe the Rooms and Suites in the Main House: Suite 11 on the Ground Floor, Suite 12 and Room 4 & Room 5 on the 2nd Floor, and Room 7 & Room 8 on the 3rd Floor (or some combination thereof) – Take them all and your group can enjoy the MHI Dining Room as your very own, since it will not otherwise be open during this period!
  • Let us know what you are looking for and we will help you design the perfect refuge for you and your team

Let us help you escape the city, or the feeling of being cooped up in your own home, however beautiful it may be!

See you at the beach!

Sylvia, Gary & Kenny

Mill House Inn Summer Evening

Mill House Inn Summer Evening

This is your Last Chance to VOTE FOR THE MILL HOUSE INN in the Conde Nast Readers’ Choice Award by June 30 2020 – Win an All-Inclusive Caribbean Sailing Adventure for two!

The post The Mill House Inn Reopens July 1st! appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Winter Happenings in the Hamptons 2020 27 Jan 2020, 9:35 am

Mill House Inn in Snow

Mill House Inn in Snow

So you always thought of the Hamptons as a summer resort for the beautiful people – maybe if you came out here, some of it might rub off on you…

But don’t worry – You are beautiful (and so is the East End) – any time of year!

Let’s take a look at what’s happening on the East End of Long Island in February and March.

Red Roses for Valentine’s Day

Red Roses for Valentine’s Day

Valentines Day

What would February be without Valentine’s Day? And this year it falls on the Friday of President’s Day Weekend.  So take some extra time to celebrate love (and our visionary forefathers!)

  • Valentine’s Day is the second most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas. Approximately 150 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually – all around the world. February has long been celebrated as a month of romance, and St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains vestiges of both Christian and ancient Roman tradition.
  • The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred. Tradition has it that one of these young men, held in a Roman prison, fell in love with his captor’s daughter. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed, “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still used today. This sounds (to me) dubious – at best – but then many traditions are crafted around wishful thinking and calculated manipulation of existing traditions.
Romulus and Remus with Lupa

Romulus and Remus with Lupa

It seems more likely (to me) that the Christian church decided to place St. Valentine’s feast day in the middle of February in an effort to “Christianize” the pagan celebration of Lupercalia:

  • ‘Celebrated at the ides of February, or February 15, Lupercalia was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, the Roman god of agriculture, as well as to the Roman founders Romulus and Remus. To begin the festival, members of the Luperci, an order of Roman priests, would gather at a sacred cave where the infants Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome, were believed to have been cared for by a she-wolf or lupa. The priests would sacrifice a goat, for fertility, and a dog, for purification. They would then strip the goat’s hide into strips, dip them into the sacrificial blood and take to the streets, gently slapping both women and crop fields with the goat hide. Roman women welcomed the touch of the hides because it was believed to make them more fertile in the coming year. Later in the day, according to legend, all the young women in the city would place their names in a big urn. The city’s bachelors would each choose a name and become paired for the year with his chosen woman. These matches often ended in marriage.’

Check out the Huffington Post’s Blog for 10 Valentine’s Day Traditions All Around the World and Travel Triangle’s 15 Valentine’s Day Traditions Around The World That Make The Day Of Love Special , or 5 Valentine’s Day Traditions From All Over The World That Will Make Single People Feel Less Alone from YourTango for more…

  • “Pigs have a beautiful personality and are blessed with good fortune in life.” – Chinese Folklore

  • “Love will find a way through paths where wolves fear to prey.” – Lord Byron

  • “All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” – Charles M. Schulz

Dark Chocolate for Health and Happiness!

Dark Chocolate for Health and Happiness!

And remember: 

  • Ask our Personal Assistants for restaurants we recommend to spice up your Valentine’s Dinner! 
  • Or just hang out in your suite with the one you love and eat Dark Chocolate… (It’s good for you!)
Long Island Winterfest 2020

Long Island Winterfest 2020

Long Island Winterfest 2020

13th Annual Long Island Winterfest February 7 – March 8, 2020

Experience the magic of the East End in the Winter! From Wine Tastings to Vineyard Performances to Theatrical Performances and more… Meet the Farmers, the Bakers, the Makers, the Performers, the Artists, the Musicians and the Chefs without traffic or crowds. Sit by fireplaces sipping wine, enjoy winter sunsets and live entertainment across the North Fork and in the Hamptons.

Sag Harbor - HarborFrost Fireworks

Sag Harbor – HarborFrost Fireworks

Hamptons Arts Thaw Fest

Hamptons Arts Network Thaw Fest March 6 – 29 2020 

Hamptons Arts Network (HAN) is a consortium of not-for-profit organizations working together to create a unified arts community of the Hamptons. Their goal is to promote collaboration, partnerships, and shared programming among its members. They also advocate for the arts in the area of economic development, tourism, and education.

  • Cocktails
  • Parties
  • Dancing
  • Garden Tours
  • Chamber Music
  • Decorative Arts Tour
  • Film Screenings
Montauk Saint Patrick's Day Parade

Montauk Saint Patrick’s Day Parade

Saint Patrick’s Day Parade

  • Montauk is the place to be Sunday March 22nd, 2020! The second biggest parade in New York State (after NYC), with Marching Bands, Bagpipes, Floats, Clam Chowder, and more. The official end of winter in the Hamptons.  The Clam Bar opens for the season. Not to be missed… Stay tuned for more!

But even if you just want to escape, that’s fine with us – maybe it will snow… But not on Saint Patty’s Day, please. 


Mill House Inn Winter Evening

Mill House Inn Winter Evening


The post Winter Happenings in the Hamptons 2020 appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Winter Activities in East Hampton 2020 10 Jan 2020, 9:15 am

Main Beach East Hampton Winter

Main Beach East Hampton Winter

Everyone thinks of the Hamptons as a summer resort. But to the locals, it is the Off-Season when the area is at its most spectacular.

In the winter most of our favorite restaurants, shops, galleries, museums, and theaters are open. And no crowds! 

The beaches never close, and there are exciting outdoor activities not available in other seasons. Just bring layers, the kids, and the dog! And then warm up with some of J’s coffee or Hot Chocolate drinks… A good book or a movie in front of the fireplace…

Skating on East Hampton Town Pond in Stained Glass

Skating on East Hampton Town Pond in Stained Glass

Indoor and outdoor winter sports in East Hampton

  • East Hampton Town Pond
    • Sometimes the Ice Skating Gods conspire to make Town Pond in East Hampton Village into a picture perfect skating rink – straight out of Currier and Ives…  Mostly, when it is cold enough to freeze, the pond is covered with snow. Sometimes an enterprising team of hockey players will shovel it off – but then it’s hard to get them off the ice. Sometimes, the glassy surface is just right, and children of all ages grab their skates, a thermos of hot chocolate, and slip and slide to their heart’s’ content! And if you don’t have skates, it can be great fun just slipping and sliding in your shoes. We don’t recommend spike heels!
    • The East Hampton Star On Town Pond
  • Buckskill Winter Club 178 Buckskill Road, East Hampton 631.324.2243
    • The Buckskill Ice Rink (the winter iteration of the Buckskill Tennis Club) is the only refrigerated, NHL regulation-sized, ice rink in the Hamptons, offering a wide array of family activities including public ice skating and skate rentals; U.S.F.S.A. figure skating programs; junior and adult ice hockey programs; private skating lessons and group skating lessons; birthday parties, private parties, teen nights and much more! They have a cozy clubhouse with an open fire where you can warm up and watch the action on the ice with a cup of hot soup or European hot chocolate from the full-service snack bar.
    • Check out the video ‘New Buckskill Winter Club Nighttime Skating’
The East Hampton Clubhouse - Game Room (Photo by Christine Sampson)

The East Hampton Clubhouse – Game Room (Photo by Christine Sampson)

  • The Clubhouse & East Hampton Indoor Tennis on Daniel’s Hole Road in Wainscott, across from the East Hampton Airport 631.557.2695
    • New in 2018, the Clubhouse was built to fill a void created when the old East Hampton Bowl closed in 2013. Now, finally, there is a place for the entire family to have fun, whatever the season or the weather!
      • 6 Indoor Tennis Courts
      • 10 Bowling Lanes
      • Game Arcade
      • Corn Hole and Bocce Ball courts
      • Pool Tables
      • Full Sports Bar and Restaurant with more than 25 TVs
      • Miniature Golf (outdoors)
      • Trivia & Bingo Nights
      • Read about it in the Sag Harbor Express
Seal Watching - photograph courtesy of CRESLI

Seal Watching – photograph courtesy of CRESLI

Seal Watching and Other Excursions

  • East Hampton Trails Preservation Society
    • Discover the unique natural treasures of East Hampton . . . Free hikes, bike rides and paddling all year long.
    • The Seal Haul-Out Trail (3 miles) is a popular hike along an easy, wooded trail to the shores of Block Island Sound. If conditions are right, you will find seals sunning themselves on the rocks near the shore. Dress warmly, with proper footgear for weather conditions, and don’t forget binoculars. Meet at Camp Hero Road in Montauk, a right turn off Route 27 about one mile east of Deep Hollow Ranch.
    • Check their Website or Facebook for Hike Times.
  • CRESLI 2020 Seal Cruises with the Viking Fleet 631.319.6003
    • The Viking Fleet and CRESLI (the Coastal Research and Education Society of Long Island) are teaming up for some wonderful winter and spring Seal Cruises aboard the fast and luxurious 125 ft. Viking Superstar. Explore pristine areas around Plum Island, Great Gull Island, and Little Gull Island for breathtaking views of Harbor Seals and Gray Seals.
Borghese Vineyard in the Winter

Borghese Vineyard in the Winter


  • Long Island Wineries thrive in the winter! Recovering from the crush of the autumn harvest, the onslaught of holiday shoppers and the popping of corks as they introduce the new cuvees in time for the New Year, the vintners, growers and wine-tasting baristas finally have time to breathe.
  • Winterfest 2020 (February 7 – March 8, 2020), a five-week celebration of Local Culture!
  • The East End of Long Island is absolutely magical in the Winter. It’s completely different then what you will find in the peak tourism season. If you are looking for a great weekend getaway and an experience to remember forever, it’s right here. Choose from wine tastings to vineyard concerts and theatrical performances. 
  • Check Here for Events during the 2020 Winterfest

John Drew Theater @ Guild HallJohn Drew Theater @ Guild Hall

Music & Dancing

  • Guild Hall presents The Met: Live In HD in the beautiful, recently renovated, state-of-the-art, John Drew Theater
  • Bay Street Theater
    • Fireside Sessions with Nancy Atlas Saturday, January 4 – 25 @ 8:00 pm
    • Rock out with Nancy Atlas and The Nancy Atlas Project and enjoy some of the hottest music on the East End. Nancy sets the theater ablaze with her band and some massively talented special guests. BUY EARLY! These shows sell out every year! New special guests every week!
  • Southampton Cultural Center
    • Looking for a fun way to shed those winter pounds?  Check out the SCC’s Cuban Salsa Dance Lessons Every Monday @ 7:00 pm

The list goes on. And if you would rather do nothing, we can arrange that for you, too.

Happy New Year!


East Hampton Beach - Winter Sun Through Clouds

East Hampton Beach – Winter Sun Through Clouds

The post Winter Activities in East Hampton 2020 appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Our Christmas Reading List 19 Dec 2019, 6:00 am

East Hampton Aerial with Snow

East Hampton Aerial with Snow

Here is our (opinionated) Christmas Reading List.  

This is certainly not comprehensive and it is not comprised solely of Hamptons authors and/or settings, but we think you will enjoy it . . . Please let me know if I have missed any or your favorites. I will be happy to add them. I know I missed many of mine!

A Soused Mouse by Marina Dieul @ Pinterest

A Soused Mouse by Marina Dieul @ Pinterest

I will start with a family favorite, written by my father, Lester (Hank) Talkington. My mother made a little illustrated book of it and every year we hang it on the Christmas Tree and ceremoniously read it out loud with the first glass of eggnog. You might want to make a book for your tree while you make the nog! Start your own eggnog tradition! And be sure to leave Santa a glass on the mantle!


This is about the mouse
Who was not a stirring creature
On the night before Christmas
Because he had been stirring eggnog
All day long
And sipping the nog
‘Til he was fried as an egg
And Santa called him
‘A Soused Mouse!’

Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ Illustrated by Arthur Rackham

Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ Illustrated by Arthur Rackham

Next, let’s sample some holiday writings by notable Hamptons Authors (some of these have been mentioned in other Reading List Blogs), and some writers only tenuously related to the Hamptons (if at all) but worthy of our attention this time of year. Whether to give as gifts or to read by the fire (with a glass of nog) – these are some book we think worthy:

Charles Dickens

  • A Christmas Carol (1843) – OK,OK . . . After all these years, you have had enough of this classic book. But when was the last time you actually read it?  And before you dismiss it once again, please read the essay by John Irving referenced below.
  • And check out the 2018 unabridged edition of A Christmas Carol written by Charles Dickens with classic drawings throughout by Arthur Rackham.

It’s the tale of a miser given a second chance.
From an author needing to get out of debt.
A story of redemption and forgiveness.
The story of Christmas

John Steinbeck

Joseph Heller

  • Almost Like Christmas A masterful short story from the acclaimed author of Catch-22, about one long night of anticipation. Not exactly a traditional Christmas story.

John Irving

  • In Defense of Sentimentality The New York Times Books 1979 . . . ‘Christmas — or any other demonstration of giving — is no time for “a mincing art”; we should learn that there is really no good time for such cramped elitism. “God bless us every one!” cried Tiny Tim. But this Christmas, since we’re so familiar with “A Christmas Carol” — in its several versions — we might well read “Great Expectations”; it is a book many of us read last when we were in school when we were too young to appreciate it. For its Christmas spirit — its open-hearted and forgiving qualities, and its feast of language — it is the best of novels by a writer of no mincing art. And when we writers — in our own work — escape the slur of sentimentality, we should ask ourselves if what we are doing matters.’
James Brady, A Hamptons Christmas

James Brady, A Hamptons Christmas

James Brady

  • A Hamptons Christmas (St. Martin’s Press – 2000) – Journalist Beecher Stowe and book editor Alix Dunraven are back in the Hamptons to enjoy that delicious season between Thanksgiving and Christmas complete with corny small town parades, traditional holiday trimming, Steven Spielberg’s children dressed as elves, and a little girl’s plot to spend the Christmas Eve with her heroine, Martha Stewart. But Martha, it seems, is spending her holiday at her other home in Westport, Connecticut. Can Alix and Beecher possibly salvage Christmas for this little girl lost?

Truman Capote  

  • A Christmas Memory – First published in Lady’s Home Journal in 1956, and republished in a beautifully illustrated edition (with One Christmas and The Thanksgiving Visitor) by Modern Library in 1996. This much sought-after autobiographical recollection from Truman Capote (In Cold Blood; Breakfast at Tiffany’s) about his rural Alabama boyhood is a perfect gift for Capote’s fans young and old. A holiday classic from “one of the greatest writers and most fascinating society figures in American history” (Vanity Fair)
Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut

  • Sun Moon Star – Sun Moon Star is the story of the birth of Jesus — as told by Kurt Vonnegut. This children’s book takes the newborn Jesus’ perspective, offering beautiful and insightful descriptions of the world from someone newly born into it. A powerful departure from Vonnegut’s more adult work, Sun Moon Star gives readers a rare glimpse of the writer’s talent in a format that’s unique and unexpected. Originally published in 1980, the book is long out of print, but is available as an E-book.
  • While Mortals Sleep – In this short story, published posthumously in a Collection of Short Stories of the same name, a crusty newspaperman is forced onto a committee to judge Christmas displays —a job that leads him to a suspiciously ostentatious ex-con and then a miracle.
  • American Christmas Card 2004 from In These Times
  • A Present for Big Saint Nick from The Tale of Sir Bob

Nelson DeMille

Dan Rattiner, A Christmas Mitt Illustrated by Michael Paraskevas

Dan Rattiner, A Christmas Mitt Illustrated by Michael Paraskevas

Dan Rattiner

Christmas Stories (1993) by John Cheever, Anne Sexton, E.E. Cummings, Laura Ingalls Wilder, James Thurber, Peter Matthiessen, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Bret Harte, Charles Dickens, Willa Cather, and Alex Haley, edited by John Miller.

  • James Thurber’s curmudgeonly satire on the American mania for sending Christmas cards, John Cheever’s bittersweet tale of a lonely New York elevator operator, Anne Sexton’s deeply ambivalent lyric poem to her mother and Alex Haley’s dramatic story of a slave rebellion on Christmas Eve are among the offerings in this eclectic Christmas sampler. Along with chestnuts like Dickens’s ”A Christmas Tree” and Laura Ingalls Wilder’s ”A Merry Christmas,” this beautifully designed volume includes more unconventional fare, such as Strindberg’s brooding symbolist playlet ”The Respite,” Dostoevsky’s account of drunken holiday cheer in a Siberian labor camp and Clarence Major’s tangy story, ”Ten Pecan Pies,” in which a wheelchair-bound old man’s stored-up resentment of his wife nearly derails Christmas for their grandchildren. Also included are an excerpt from Frank Capra’s screenplay for It’s a Wonderful Life, Peter Matthiessen’s exquisite log of a shipboard Christmas in the tropics. W.H. Auden’s ”The Meditation of Simeon” and Andrei Codrescu’s warm reminiscence of Yuletide in communist Romania where the holiday was celebrated despite an official ban.

Ray Bradbury

  • Dear Santa Ray Bradbury’s strange, magical, and unsettling story of a grown boy bent on understanding the man behind the beard, red coat, and hat at his local department store.

David Baldacci

  • The Christmas Train (2002) – Disillusioned journalist Tom Langdon must get from Washington to Los Angeles in time for Christmas. Forced to travel by train, he begins a journey of rude awakenings, thrilling adventures, and holiday magic. He has no idea that the locomotives pulling him across America will actually take him into the rugged terrain of his own heart, as he rediscovers people’s essential goodness and someone very special he believed he had lost.
  • Excellent in the Audible version – especially if you are travelling by train (or car) to your holiday gathering!
  • Also made into a Hallmark Hall of Fame TV movie (2017) starring Dermot Mulroney, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Danny Glover, & Joan Cusack
An Anthony Bourdain Christmas

An Anthony Bourdain Christmas

Anthony Bourdain

  • A Chef’s Christmas – Appearing as ‘A Taste of Fiction’ in The Nasty Bits (2008) – Bringing together the best of his previously uncollected nonfiction–and including new, never-before-published material–The Nasty Bits is a rude, funny, brutal and passionate stew for fans and the uninitiated alike. A New York Time Best Seller
  • A Chef’s Christmas – Audio Version Narrated by Anthony Bourdain (2002) – Anthony Bourdain once again brings to light the inner workings of the “culinary underbelly” in his bold reinvention of the traditional Christmas story. At once risqué and charming, A Chef’s Christmas is sure to bring holiday cheer to those who make dinner and those who only make reservations.
  • I will leave the editorializing to Gary – One of these days I am sure he will write about hanging out in afterhours chef dives with Tony . . . and much more.
First Winter

First Winter

And some other lists:

Suggestions from East Hampton’s Bookhampton:

The Mission Daily recommends The 30 Best Christmas Books of All Time

Goodreads 10th Annual Goodreads Choice Awards

The Federalist’s The Best Christmas Picture Books You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

The Independent – As Neil Gaiman said, “Books make great gifts, because they have whole worlds inside of them. And it’s much cheaper to buy somebody a book than it is to buy them the whole world.”

I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of reading to do!

Have fun giving and reading . . .

– Sylvia

Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ Illustrated by Arthur Rackham

Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ Illustrated by Arthur Rackham

The post Our Christmas Reading List appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Our Wishes for ‘A White Christmas’ in The Hamptons 17 Dec 2019, 6:00 am

Snow in East Hampton Village

Snow in East Hampton Village

For the past twenty years I have enjoyed the good fortune of living in a small village – often called one of the most beautiful in America – warmed by ocean waters and surrounded by pristine sandy beaches. As the winter approaches, nor’easters and snow squalls threaten to invade the calm and quiet we often take for granted. Not to worry – there is a magic that watches over the East End; it is a special place to live and a delightful one to visit.

Sylvia’s pictures will affirm that there is as much beauty in a winter blizzard as a moonlight walk down Main Street. Shop windows adorned with seasonal trim and trees decorated with shimmering lights and ornaments. Snowflakes driven by a north east wind spin and sparkle under a winter full moon. All are indications that the Holidays are around the corner.

Bing Crosby sings White Christmas in Holiday Inn

Bing Crosby sings White Christmas in Holiday Inn

The very first time I watched Bing Crosby declare that he was giving up the hustle and bustle of New York City and moving to the country, I was captivated by the 1942 movie Holiday Inn. Few would call Connecticut “The Country” today, but in 1942 the horse and carriage ride to the Inn was classic New England country. White Christmas – all 100 million copies of the best selling single of all times – reminds us how the distinctive voice of Mr Crosby made Irving Berlin’s song soar to the top of the charts again and again. I think it’s all about Bing’s pipes tapping out the notes of White Christmas on the bells of Holiday Inn’s Christmas Tree as he sings with Marjorie Reynolds!

Watching Holiday Inn over the years played a large part in my dedication to finding my very own ‘Holiday Inn.’ After almost 20 years of searching, the Mill House Inn finally became our reality in 1999.

Bing had another holiday hit, from what would be his final Christmas Special. He said of his “Merrie Olde Christmas”” special guest: ‘I think he is a clean cut kid, a real fine asset to the show who sings well with a great voice, who also reads his lines well‘. In September 1977 Bing Crosby was speaking of David Bowie! Now, 25 years later, what many call the best holiday season duet ever recorded still continues to chart.

David Bowie and Bing Crosby on the 1977 ‘Merrie Olde Christmas Special’

David Bowie and Bing Crosby on the 1977 ‘Merrie Olde Christmas Special’

“Little Drummer Boy  is a Christmas song written in 1957, while the “Peace on Earth” tune and lyrics were added to the song especially for Bowie and Crosby’s recording. Peace on Earth was composed just before the recording because Bowie did not picture himself singing the Little Drummer Boy. The song was recorded on September 11th for Crosby’s 1977 television special, Bing Crosby’s ‘Merrie Olde Christmas’. Bing left us on October 14th 1977, before the first airing of the show that November.

The Bowie-Crosby duet became infamous when Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly filmed a hilarious shot-for-shot remake that adhered to the original dialogue.  

Along with Bing Crosby’s White Christmas, a few additional classics make the Holidays shine for me. The Christmas Song (or Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire), most often associated with  the distinct vocals of Nat King Cole, was actually written as a cure for the summer heat in LA’s Toluca Lake!

Nat King Cole

Nat King Cole

My Dad’s favorite was Nat Cole; my new favorite version is by Aaron Neville. The song remains beautiful – the video of Aaron singing may well bring a holiday tear to your eyes.

Aaron Neville Sings ‘The Christmas Song’

Aaron Neville Sings ‘The Christmas Song’

And for a 7 year old me, what could be sweeter than an introduction to Jazz via Charles Shultz and the brilliance of Vince Guaraldi?

A Charlie Brown Christmas - Music by Vince Guaraldi

A Charlie Brown Christmas - Music by Vince Guaraldi

Blue and White are my favorite Christmas Colors!

The number one all time Holiday Christmas Album is all about unrequited love. Looking at the faces of his fans as Elvis speaks to them like a friend, would speak to his loved ones tells the beginning of the story. The intimacy of sitting with his fans and letting them know he wanted to sing his favorite Christmas song for them made Elvis real, he was a part of their Christmas. Blue Christmas was recorded in Hollywood CA 1957

I’ll have a blue Christmas without you
I’ll be so blue just thinking about you
Decorations of red on our green Christmas tree
Won’t be the same dear, if you’re not here with me

And when those blue snowflakes start fallin’
That’s when those blue memories start callin’
You’ll be doin’ all right, with your Christmas of white
But I’ll have a blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas

In 1957 Martina McBride was 2 years old when the TV Special was first recorded. The magic of technology allowed Elvis and Martina to sing Blue Christmas as a duet.  

Elvis Presley poses with Colonel Tom Parker dressed as Santa Claus in this Christmas card circa 1965

Elvis Presley poses with Colonel Tom Parker dressed as Santa Claus in this Christmas card circa 1965

All the Music mentioned here, and more, can be found on Spotify in “A Mill House Inn Christmas ’18“.  Call it my Christmas Present to you!


A lagniappe is truly that something extra a gift given from the heart.

I heard this song often, not on the radio. It played in my head when I lived in Jersey City.

Please have a listen. It’s might not be so happy, unless of course you do something about it.

In the Ghetto

From Elvis in Memphis 1969

People, don’t you understand
The child needs a helping hand
Or he’ll grow to be an angry young man some day?
Take a look at you and me
Are we too blind to see
Do we simply turn our heads, and look the other way?

Elvis Sings ‘In the Ghetto’

Elvis Sings ‘In the Ghetto’

We fed people because they were hungry and afraid to ask

We found a place for them to sleep because they were cold and tired

We learned to share our passion for food, so they could work

We made a difference, for the forgotten ones, the invisible people

We promised our friendship and empathy

You can make a difference, you can make a better world

Find your way and give it a try, I promise it will be your very best Christmas   

– Gary

East Hampton Village on a Winter Night

East Hampton Village on a Winter Night

The post Our Wishes for ‘A White Christmas’ in The Hamptons appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Our Hamptons Reading List: Bookstores 5 Dec 2019, 6:00 am



One of my main criteria when deciding if I will ever return to a vacation destination is the presence of a great bookstore. After all, you need a place to learn about the local history, food, art, and culture of the area, as well as grab a couple of trashy local gossip books to take to the beach with you.

Maybe you want to find the perfect book for a snuggle-down with lots of pillows, wrapped in your duvet, in front of the fireplace in your vacation suite. A glass of local wine, a cup of our seasonal hot cider, or a cup of THCO drinking chocolate, completes my concept of heaven!

And, of course, what better gift to give when you get home, than a book about where you have been? Beats a tee shirt!

Let’s Explore our Bookstores


In East Hampton we are lucky to have BookHampton, an excellent bookstore at 41 Main Street, with great light, great books and a knowledgeable staff willing to share their love of books. Couple that with a whole section of local books (local authors, local artists, local chefs, & local history) and numerous events with locals … and lots of children’s books too. Makes my heart sing! And, passing by on a recent Christmastime evening, we were drawn in by the strains of a choir of local angels, singing carols!

Simphiwe Ndzube Study for a Voyage, Courtesy of Harper’s Books

Simphiwe Ndzube Study for a Voyage, Courtesy of Harper’s Books

Harper’s Books

Harper’s Books, at 87 Newtown Lane, is one of those rare treasures – a used bookshop and gallery specializing in rare photography, art, and literary books, with particular emphasis on association copies, landmark items in exceptional condition, and unique examples of work personalized by artists and writers. In addition to their book business, they have year round shows of fine art and photography open to the public. Worth the walk just to go in and browse but I have never come out empty handed!

Vogel Bindery

Vogel Bindery

Vogel Bindery

Are you ready (finally) to start hand-writing your memoir? Do you have a precious old book you want to preserve? Maybe you need a very special gift for the desk of your favorite CEO, or have an empty bookcase crying out for a wall of faux book spines? Vogel Bindery, at 30 Blue Jay Way, also in East Hampton, has been crafting books entirely by hand using traditional techniques virtually unchanged for 300 years.

Approximately forty steps go into the making of a book. Starting with 100% cotton rag paper that is cut, folded and sewn together by hand to become the text block. Ending with the final step of hand-tooling a design in 24K gold onto the leather cover. Each step is carefully considered and meticulously executed.

Canio’s Books

Canio’s Books

Canio’s Books

Canio’s Books, at 290 Main Street In Sag Harbor, has been hosting its author reading series since 1981, and its Moby Dick marathon readings have brought crowds to the bookshop in celebration of the great American novel that mentions Sag Harbor. In 1999, Maryann Calendrille, a writer, and Kathryn Szoka, a photographer, took over Canio’s Books developing the tradition of readings, concerts, and community events, and adding their own particular interests and talents.

Both teach workshops at the store. Kathryn focuses on photography and has expanded Canio’s Gallery to highlight local artists. The carefully curated book collection includes new and used literature, fiction and non-fiction, lovely children’s books, art, poetry, and history, plus books on cooking, food, the environment, nature and spirituality. One requirement is that all books are very well written and worth reading.

Vintage Map of Long Island

Vintage Map of Long Island

Southampton Books

Southampton Books, an independent bookstore at 16 Hampton Road in the village of Southampton, has the newest best-sellers as well as a large selection of rare & collectible first editions and signed books. Plus they offer a unique collection of Local Books (including quite a few that look like I need to buy to fill out my collection!), collectible Comics, and more. They also offer appraisals if you want to unload a few precious volumes in order to buy a new Ferrari!

So, in a nutshell, East Hampton has everything you need for a perfect vacation: the Mill House Inn, the best breakfast, abundant beaches, mouth-watering wineries, world-class restaurants, and great bookstores! What else could you ask for?

Call us or email us to book your visit!

See you soon,

– Sylvia

Reading on Maidstone Beach

Reading on Maidstone Beach

If you haven’t already, check out our previous Reading List blogs:

The post Our Hamptons Reading List: Bookstores appeared first on Mill House Inn.

6 Days of Christmas Shopping in The Hamptons 3 Dec 2019, 6:00 am

A Mill House Inn Gift Certificate

A Mill House Inn Gift Certificate

Pour yourself a holiday beverage and relax, perhaps a glass of Sylvia’s Eggnog. We are here to help you become the best Christmas Shopper of all times!

‘Christmas is almost here and I still have so many names on my list and not enough gifts under the tree!’

Day One – Traveling in Style on ‘A trip to East Hampton Village’

  • How about a classic auto for the trip, maybe a Jaguar, Porsche or Bentley
  • Skip the driving with a Limo, Helicopter, Seaplane or The Ambassador Coach

Day Two – A ‘Mill House Inn Gift Certificate’ with the Perfect Hamptons Adventure hidden inside each and every envelope

  • Make the gift of a stay at MHI even more special by adding a special touch for everyone on your list
  • In your suite – A Catered Dinner, Couples Massage, Spa Treatments or Movies & Popcorn by the fire
  • Your Personal Assistant will take care of everything – Restaurant Reservations, Wine, Flowers, Chocolates

‘It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas and I need to finish my shopping soon!’

Day Three – Something Very Hamptons from Our List of Tickets and Events

  • The Hampton Classic, International Hamptons Film Festival, Food Truck Derby or Dan’s Taste of Summer
  • Tickets to Stephen Talkhouse, Guild Hall, Bay Street Theatre, a Gallery Opening or a special shopping event

Day Four – A little bit of the Outdoors, after all it is the East End, a Gift Certificates fit nicely in stockings. . .

  • Surfing Lessons, Horseback Riding on the Beach, Private Bike Tour, Guided Nature Walk
  • Whale & Seal Watch, Fly Fishing Charter, Sunset Cruise and Dinner on a Secluded Beach
  • Harvest Season Chauffeured Wine Tours, Picnic on a classic sailboat
East Hampton Town Pond - Winter

East Hampton Town Pond – Winter

‘There is so much more to get done for Christmas Day, I feel like I will never finish every task on my list!’

Day Five – Beautifully Curated Lists by the MHI Editor. Each says ‘The Hamptons’ in a special way. And a short shopping story.

  • About The Hamptons Books, Movies, Wine, Spirits, Food, Clothing, Furniture, Art, Jewelry
  • Many stores are available online or give Amazon a look for books, music, movies
  • Gift Certificates are available from almost any vendor!
  • Our Hamptons Reading List: Bookstores
    One of my main criteria when deciding if I will ever return to a vacation destination is the presence of a great bookstore. After all, you need a place to learn about the local history, food, art, and culture of the area, as well as grab a couple of trashy local gossip books to take to the beach with you.
  • Architecture and Some Notable Architects of the Hamptons
    Given the ever changing nature of the Hamptons over time, it is only natural that the character of the architecture here should change as well. Their books make amazing gifts!
  • Our Hamptons Reading List: The Photographers
    I’ve added to our Hamptons Reading List with some remarkable books of photographs by some of our very talented neighbors . . . each so different!
  • Our Hamptons Reading List: Memoirs and Biographies of Hamptons Celebrities
    A brief tour of a few memoirs and biographies of Hamptons luminaries, including Alan Alda, Alec Baldwin, Carl Bernstein, Jimmy Buffett, Billy Joel, and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. October is the perfect month to cuddle up and keep reading.
  • The Hamptons Movie List
    After writing about The Hamptons International Film Festival 2018. It seems quite fitting to progress to the subject of Hamptons Movies. But, given how many movie industry types call the Hamptons “home” (or at least 2nd or 3rd home, or spend a lot of time here), there are too many “Hamptons Movies” to cover in even two blogs!
  • Our Hamptons Reading List: Non-Fiction Edition
    These are not, by any means, all of the non-fiction books about the Hamptons, but I am starting with the books I have collected in my own library over the years. I am starting with my favorites.
  • Our Hamptons Reading List: Newspapers, Magazines, and Blogs
    This is a list of our most basic information sources: local newspapers, magazines & blogs – both online and off. Year to year, there are many others littering the sidewalks of East Hampton Village and the various black holes of the Internet, but these are the publications that so far have survived and that we find valuable. Tuck a subscription into their stockings!
  • Exploring The South Fork Wineries
    The South Fork lays claim to only 3 wineries, as much of the rich farmland has been supplanted by McMansions and green land preservation tracts. But don’t equate quantity with quality; exploring the three South Fork wineries will make for a great viticultural adventure or three! And a Wine Club membership makes a gift that keeps on giving!
  • The Hamptons’ Summer Art Scene
    The history of art in the Hamptons really started with the building of the railroad in 1872. As well as attracting the wealthy Summer Cottage community, escaping the heat of the city, artists were drawn here for the beauty of the landscape and the unique quality of the light reflecting from the water on all sides. Give a gift of Local Art!
  • The Best Spirits on The East End
    The terroir that benefits our unique wine region has also given birth to a wide variety of beverages. Maybe the beginnings of today’s craft cocktails originated in the area’s bootleggers, smugglers and the up-island speakeasies they supplied. During the 1920’s, the high cost of imported alcohol limited its availability to the high society set and with that came a new class of Prohibition Era Cocktails. This is all so new and very cool on the East End! Drink Now!!
    • Beautiful bottles of specially crafted spirits, Cherrywood Smoked Malt, Rough Rider Straight Bourbon, Botanical Dry Gin
    • Hard Apple Cider blended from jonagold, fuji, cameo, pink lady, elstar, granny smith, mutsu, pippin, rome or empire apples
    • Specialty beers brewed by a husband and wife who share a labor of love and passion
    • Moonshine that harkens back to prohibitions days; Apple Pie and Honey Infused
    • Grappa and brandy from the couple who define sustainable farm to table
    • Membership in a Brewery or Distillery Club
    • A bookshelf of our favorite cocktail encyclopedias
    • Create a custom spirit at a bespoke distillery and incubator
    • The Best Spirits on The East End
  • Shopping the Hamptons
    So she arrived on a Sunday night, and snuggled under a down quilt with the fireplace flickering. The detective in me determines the cause of the red smears and brown blotches in her journal are from chocolate chip cookies and a bottle of 2014 Prime Number from Roanoke Vineyards – the perfect pairing for planning tomorrow’s shopping. As if throwing a dart at a map on the wall, she drifted off to sleep knowing that tomorrow morning her adventure would start by wandering out the front door of the Mill House Inn in East Hampton Village.

    For the rest of the story take a trip down the lanes with me, enjoy the village shops, shop a bit, have a cocktail!

Winter Window Shopping in East Hampton

Winter Window Shopping in East Hampton

Day Six – Just about done, this is the easy one! Give our Elves a call and they will take care of everything. In 6 easy steps!
  1. Give us a call. . . Let us know who’s on your shopping list and what makes them smile and we will help you be the hero of their Christmas Tale
  2. Our Elves are ready to help and they promise to find just the right gift for everyone you love. They also have a gift just for you
  3. For every $500 Gift Certificate you purchase. . . Our Elves will gift wrap a $100 Gift Certificate just for you!
  4. If this Gift Certificate is for you and your special someone. . . please let us know! We will add 20% to the value
  5. We can build an ‘MHI Gift Certificate’ with the Perfect Hamptons Adventure hidden inside each and every envelope
  6. St Nick is amazed what his Elves can fit in every envelope!  By now I bet you’re glad our Elves only learned to count to 6
1 Partridge in a pear-tree ... 2 Turtle doves … 3 French hens … 4 Calling Birds … 5 Golden rings … 6 Geese a laying … 7 Swans a swimming … 8 Maids a milking … 9 Ladies dancing … 10 Lords a leaping … 11 Pipers piping … 12 Drummers drumming

1 Partridge in a pear-tree . . . 2 Turtle doves . . . 3 French hens . . . 4 Calling Birds . . . 5 Golden rings . . . 6 Geese a laying . . . 7 Swans a swimming . . . 8 Maids a milking . . . 9 Ladies dancing . . . 10 Lords a leaping . . . 11 Pipers piping . . . 12 Drummers drumming

Lagniappe [lan-yap]: Cajun for a little something extra

Anthony Bourdain brought to light the inner workings of the “culinary underbelly” in his bold reinvention of the traditional Christmas story. At once risqué and charming, A Chef’s Christmas is sure to bring holiday cheer to those who make dinner and those who only make reservations.

A Chef’s Christmas is found as a bonus chapter in Nasty Bits, even better to listen to Tony read his Christmas tale. The book is Adult rated and hilarious – just like the restaurant business! “Maybe there are Christmas miracles. And maybe there are special angels for chefs and cooks” AB. . . I hope so!

Community Dining with Dignity! My Favorite Gift! Have a look at our blog Hard Earned Dollars & JBJ Soul Kitchen and at JBJ Soul Kitchen

Please give us a call this Holiday Season. . . It would be our pleasure to help you travel better!


East Hampton Winter Evening

East Hampton Winter Evening

The post 6 Days of Christmas Shopping in The Hamptons appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Thanksgiving in The Hamptons 2019 – Part II 15 Nov 2019, 7:58 am

Gary Making Gravy

Gary Making Gravy

“Anthony Bourdain always invites a ‘Stunt Turkey’ to his Thanksgiving Dinner. How about you?”

There is a question often asked, especially among Chefs. You might hear the words when you’re planning a holiday dinner, a birthday party or a really special event. The question may often sound like this: ‘if this were your last dinner party, who would be on your guest list?’ The ensuing answer results in a litany of the famous and infamous alike. I would like to rephrase the question, to your benefit of course. 

My version: If you were planning ’The Last Dinner Party’ who would you choose to stand by your side in the kitchen? Who would be the members of your kitchen brigade? No rules and no guidelines, just pick your “dream team’. They may be media stars, or chefs who shun the limelight. Some will be household names and others not so much. One thing is for sure you must make your choice and stand by your brigade. It is ‘one for all and all for one’ until long after the last turkey has met his demise. After that a dose of tryptophan will morph itself into serotonin, resulting in happy dinner guests. That is – until they drift into a blissful holiday nap after dinner!  If you must know who is on my team scroll on down, but do pour yourself a glass of Roman Roth’s Merlot!

Thanksgiving in the Hamptons Part II 

  • Thanksgiving is a big Holiday, with big food and even bigger crowds, so I did two big posts.
  • My last post, Thanksgiving in the Hamptons 2019, was about a shopping trip Out East. How to do your holiday shopping in the Hamptons and indulge yourself before the big day.
  • This week is Part II, and we talk about traveling East to visit family and friends for the Holiday or simply escaping to the East End for a very intimate long weekend for two!
Carolyn Shopping At Domaine Franey

Shopping At Domaine Franey

Wine, Spirits, and Sparkling

First let’s set a few priorities and go wine shopping on the South Fork, have a look a Sylvia’s post – Exploring The South Fork Wineries – what are you bringing to dinner? A case of wine, a few special bottles of sparkling, and maybe a Spirit or two will assure you are fondly remembered all winter long!

Since 1988, Wölffer Estate Vineyards has been committed to producing premium distinctive wines, ciders and spirits through a dedication to quality, a penchant for style, and celebration of place.

  • Grapes of Roth Merlot 2015:  ‘Black in color with a dark red brick rim. Beautiful classic aromas of cassis, fine sandalwood, iodine, and leather fill the glass. The mouth-feel is rich and soft with amazing concentration and layers. Ripe fruit and dark chocolate are balanced with fine toasted oak notes, loads of velvet tannins and wonderful mushroom and earthy character. The finish is big and has great minerality and warmth and goes on for a long time. There is an overall intensity and dynamic that makes this Merlot very special and food friendly.’ -Roman Roth
  • Wolffer Classic Red Blend 2015. 62% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc
  • Christian’s Cuvee Merlot 2013  Velvety tannins and notes of licorice, leather, toasted oak’ and dark chocolate

Atlantic breezes at Channing Daughters Winery cool our vineyards creating a climate hospitable to a wide array of fascinating grape varieties. At Channing Daughters, we grow and create wines from over two dozen varieties. We are the only winery on the East End growing and producing wines from many of these grapes. Our home is a beautiful plot of land in Bridgehampton that contains twenty-eight acres of vines, our small winery and tasting room. We source about fifty percent of our grapes from special sites and people on the North Fork.’

  • 2018 Sauvignon Blanc – Mudd Vineyard, North Fork of LI – 100% Sauvignon Blanc. This is a dynamic wine exhibiting medium body, moderate alcohol, juicy acidity and a long lasting, persistent finish with beautiful subtlety and delicacy. The 2018 Mudd Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc is fresh, vibrant, precise and alive! It possesses flavors and aromas of white grapefruit, lime, herbs, cut grass, talc, tangy white peach, a chalky, salty minerality and even some hints of tropical fruits and white flowers – just plain delicious! Don’t wait this year as yields were down a bit in 2018 and we only made 348 cases. 1 case max per customer.
  • Rosato Cabernet Sauvignon Petillant Naturel 2018 – Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon this bubbly has a gorgeous pale pink-salmony orange color and intoxicating aromas and flavors of sour cherry, sugar plums, yellow plums and watermelon accompanied by our telltale minerality.  Dry and delicious with great texture and balance as well as luxurious feeling bubbles. Super versatile and can go with just about anything. Make sure to ice it down for thirty minutes before opening as it enhances this delectable sparkler to drink and open…and have your glasses and your senses ready! 1 case max per customer.

Today Duck Walk Vineyards encompasses 140 scenic acres. We produce some 5,000 cases of wine a year, and our wines have been repeatedly recognized for excellence in national competitions. From our Vidal Ice Wine made with grapes actually frozen on the vine, to our Blueberry Port crafted from wild Maine blueberries, to our unique Pinot Meunier, we strive to create wines that are distinctive and exceptional.  At heart, we are still a family with a personal touch in every aspect of our business.’

  • Malbec 2015 – Here on Long Island, as in France, we use Malbec as a blending grape to add fruit and color to other wines.  However, in 2015, we have a Malbec we feel is a standalone wine that shows what a true Malbec can be. Aged in small oak barrels for 18 months, and left on secondary lees to aid in the softening of the wine’s big tannins and to add complexity.
  • Pinot Noir 2013 – Shows lots of wild berries, raspberries, violet and a touch of cedar on the nose.  On the pallet you get hints of darker fruit, cedar and dried cherries. This would pair wonderfully with lean pork, duck breast and hard aged cheese.
  • Blueberry Port 2016 – Made with wild blueberries which are small, concentrated and brimming with flavor.  Blueberries are slowly fermented then the wine is fortified and allowed to age for a year or more. 19% alcohol. Best served with anything chocolate.

Are you thirsty for more than wine, or want the advice of an expert? Give Domaine Franey a call. Jacques, David, Dan, and Pete are the best in the business and happy to help!

Cavaniola’s Thanksgiving Spread

Cavaniola’s Thanksgiving Spread

Shopping for Dinner 

Sometimes you need to bring dinner with you when visiting friends or family. Maybe it’s just a special part of the meal you want the way you want it! Or you are set on designing dinner yourself – because we all know someone who believes they can cook. And life is too short to have a bad meal, much less a terrible holiday dinner! 

Here are a few choices for everything it takes to make a great Thanksgiving Dinner. Remember we covered some great choices in our last column Thanksgiving in the Hamptons 2019, as well.

Who I want to cook with… I should be so lucky!

Anthony Bourdain - Appetites

Anthony Bourdain – Appetites

Pardon my references to Anthony Bourdain in the current tense; in the past decades my chefs have shared their stoves with more than a few spirits. It seems that a brigade of ghosts have rescued us from the weeds more times than we care to admit!! 

Mr. Bourdain is a man of many appetites. For years, first as a chef, later as a world-traveling chronicler of food and culture on his CNN series Parts Unknown, he has made a profession of understanding the appetites of others. These days, however, if he’s cooking, it’s for family and friends. What about the Stunt Turkey? You must buy a copy of Tony’s new book to learn the secret. Appetites, Tony’s first cookbook in more than ten years, boils down forty-plus years of professional cooking and globe-trotting to a tight repertoire of personal favorites—dishes that everyone should (at least in Mr. Bourdain’s opinion) know how to cook. Once the supposed “bad boy” of cooking, Mr. Bourdain has, in recent years, become the father of a little girl—a role he has embraced with enthusiasm. After years of traveling more than 200 days a year, he now enjoys entertaining at home. The result is a home-cooking, home-entertaining cookbook like no other, with personal favorites from his own kitchen and from his travels, translated into an effective battle plan that will help you terrify your guests with your breathtaking efficiency.

J. Kenji López-Alt - The Food Lab

J. Kenji López-Alt – The Food Lab

‘Kitchen Science’ was an obscure term when I stepped into my first professional kitchen over 50 years ago. Today the work of J. Kenji López-Alt has been instrumental in making food better for everyone through science. 

Ever wondered how to pan-fry a steak with a charred crust and an interior that’s perfectly medium-rare from edge to edge when you cut into it? How to make homemade mac ‘n’ cheese that is as satisfyingly gooey and velvety-smooth as the blue box stuff, but far tastier – and more nutritious? How to roast a succulent, moist turkey (forget about brining!)—and use a foolproof method that works every time? As Serious Eats‘ culinary nerd-in-residence, Kenji has pondered all these questions and more. In The Food Lab, he focuses on the science behind beloved American dishes, delving into the interactions between heat, energy, and molecules that create great food. Kenji shows that, often, conventional methods don’t work that well, and home cooks can achieve far better results using new—but simple—techniques. In hundreds of easy-to-make recipes with over 1,000 full-color images, you will find out how to make foolproof Hollandaise sauce in just two minutes, how to transform one simple tomato sauce into a half dozen dishes, how to make the crispiest, creamiest potato casserole ever conceived, and much more. On cooking for Thanksgiving, Kenji talks crispy skin, sous vide, traditional turkey. My practice turkey just flew out of the oven – see Kenji’s take on crispy turkey skin. Kind of like turkey potato chips! When I find myself lost in the sauce I want this ‘Nerd Chef’ in my kitchen. 

Thomas Keller - Ad Hoc At Home

Thomas Keller – Ad Hoc At Home

I have been in the kitchen at Per Se, sneaked a peek at the TV screen that showed The Laundry’s kitchen prepping their Mise en Place for service. Ad Hoc is where these chefs want to eat dinner – me too! 

Thomas Keller, in his new cookbook Ad Hoc at Home, details his casual restaurant Ad Hoc in Yountville, California. He showcases more than 200 recipes for family-style meals. This is Keller at his most playful, serving up such truck-stop classics as Potato Hash with Bacon and Melted Onions, grilled-cheese sandwiches, and heartier fare including beef Stroganoff and roasted spring leg of lamb. In fun, full-color photographs, the great chef gives step-by-step lessons in kitchen basics— here is Keller teaching how to perfectly shape a basic hamburger, truss a chicken, or dress a salad. Best of all, where Keller’s previous best-selling cookbooks were for the ambitious advanced cook, Ad Hoc at Home is filled with quicker and easier recipes that will be embraced by both kitchen novices and more experienced cooks who want the ultimate recipes for American comfort-food classics. Check out TK’s juicy crispy Thanksgiving Bird and his Thanksgiving Feast. Beyond my Brigade, I want to cook at Ad Hoc next to TK when it’s time for ‘Family Meal’

Gordon Ramsay - Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking

Gordon Ramsay – Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking

So what does a Scottish Chef hailing from Stratford-Upon-Avon know about the most American of Holidays? Apparently his newest book Cooking at Home might easily suffice as the bible on everything a proper Thanksgiving should be!  

Gordon Ramsay says My rules are simple. Home cooking has to be easy. It’s got to be fast. It’s got to be delicious. If you think you can’t cook amazing food at home, think again. I’m going to prove that however busy you are it’s still possible to cook stunning food. These are the only recipes you’ll ever need.’ In Gordon Ramsay’s Home Cooking, Gordon does Thanksgiving! Gordon trained with Albert Roux and Marco Pierre White in London, and Guy Savoy and Joël Robuchon in France. That says it all, well almost all, now for the rest of the story.


  • From the New York Times: My Thanksgiving – Behind the collective feast and public ritual lies a personal dimension: the holiday as each of us has lived it, laughed about it, imagined it or reinvented it. Nine accomplished writers share their stories of the holiday.

Guess who’s open for Turkey Dinner

  • The Palm – Pre Fixe & Regular menu
    • Pre Fixe Menu: $65 per person $24 for kids under 12 yrs old | Open earlier: Noon or 1pm 
  • The 1770 House – 2pm – 8pm ~ $95 for Adults | $40 for Kids under 12 years old
  • Page – 3pm – 9pm $59 pre-fixe & a la carte menu
  • Maidstone $90 for Adults | $40 for Kids – 12- 8pm 
  • Pierres – 11am – 9pm Thanksgiving menu 
Mill House Inn Thanksgiving

Mill House Inn Thanksgiving

Our Thanksgiving Tradition

  • our wish is that you enjoy the very best Thanksgiving
  • share this holiday with family, friends, a new co-worker or neighbor down the hall
  • think about those that have less, but always make it feel like more
  • talk to an old friend who you have not spoken to in forever for a reason you no longer remember
  • help someone in need, someone special, someone you love
  • spend the holiday sharing and giving, food, wine, music, friendship, love
  • make this the very best Thanksgiving ever, because it matters


The post Thanksgiving in The Hamptons 2019 – Part II appeared first on Mill House Inn.

Thanksgiving in the Hamptons 2019 28 Oct 2019, 6:04 am

Old Hook Mill - East Hampton NY

Old Hook Mill – East Hampton NY

We travel at Thanksgiving for many reasons – visiting family (or escaping from family); a break before the holiday to get away and relax; maybe to enjoy the experience of shopping in a real farm village… Meats, fish, vegetables, cheeses, breads, pastries, wine – all taste better from the East End. 

Let’s begin with shopping on the East End for your Thanksgiving Holiday to be enjoyed at home sweet home! (Or maybe at our Graybarn Cottage – the kitchen is well equipped!) The week before Thanksgiving is the perfect time to plan a getaway to the Hamptons. Enjoy a bit of quiet before the holiday, pamper yourself with a spa day, enjoy a fantastic dinner before the cooking begins – and you don’t even have to wash the dishes! I would plan to be Out East in time for Candlelight Friday at Wolffer Estate Vineyard – live music, great wine, cheese, and charcuterie. And of course, some wine tasting to pick the perfect wines for Turkey Day!

Wolffer Tasting Room

Wolffer Tasting Room

I know Thanksgiving is all about the turkey, but we have always started Thanksgiving dinner with our favorite local catch, bay scallops. David rattray of the East Hampton Star speculates on the forecast for this year’s harvest; Stuart and Charlotte Sasso purvey the very best. They will be happy to pack and ice a few pounds of local East End scallops ready for the trip home.

As far as scallop preparation, I have a few thoughts…

BTW… Tom’s methodology is perfection and will lend itself to many garnishes, those above or otherwise.

Balsam Farms

Balsam Farms

East End Local… Vegetables, Farm Stands, Markets, Our Farmers! Where would we be without them? They have always been the foundation of our food chain and it is so appropriate today, as these makers assume the role of saving how we and our children will eat tomorrow! Our favorite farms for Thanksgiving…

  • Balsam Farms in Amagansett (or their store in Montauk) is a great place to shop for your Thanksgiving Dinner!
  • North Sea Farms our favorite turkey farm, great vegetables and fresh eggs as well
  • OMO better known as Open Minded Organics for mushrooms and Hemp Derived Oils
  • Amber Waves Farms & The Amagansett Farmers Market, that’s where the flour for MHI Pancakes is grown and milled
  • It’s hard to find on the internet, but Dayton Farms at Hardscrabble on the corner of Stephen Hands Path and Route 114 is worth a visit
  • Edible East End says there are 5 Local Farms that will change the way we think about Thanksgiving Turkey

About cooking Thanksgiving Dinner: Thomas Keller’s Feast and TK’s Brined & Crispy Bird

And Finally Dessert

  • Carissa’s The Bakery Local Amber Waves Wheat, East End Fruit, NY Kriemhild Butter and a good deal of love make Carissa Waechter’s ’The Bakery’ a must do for inclusion on your holiday shopping list. Sweet Potato Brioche, Dark Stout Bread, Pickled Rye, Madeleine, Macaron, Polenta Cake, Double Crusted Apple Pies, Fruit Meringue Tarts, Dark Chocolate Raspberry. And a few holiday surprises that will be sure to amaze.
  • Briemere Farms Blueberry Crisp, Apple Rhubarb, Boysenberry, Raspberry Plum, Pumpkin, Peach and Cherry. All made from scratch the old fashioned way, fruit from the farm as well as a variety of Jams, Jellies and Syrups 
  • Tate’s Bake Shop Home of the Crispy CC Cookie, Double CC, White Chocolate Macadamia, Brownies, Sour Cream Coffee Cake Pecan Pie. Dan’s Papers recounts the amazing story about Kathleen King
Tate’s Bakeshop Pies

Tate’s Bakeshop Pies

Lagniappe [lan-yap]: Cajun for a little something extra

Thank you for taking the time to follow my story. Every week I add an extra link, one that I hope is worth a few moments of your time.

This week, 

Our very own… Alec Baldwin has a bit to say about farming on the East End. Alec speaks to Scott Chaskey of Quail Hill Farms. To quote Alec about Scott: ‘Farmer, poet, and pioneer of the community farming movement, Scott Chaskey is the kind of progressive thinker that doesn’t come around often.’ The Peconic Land Trust also chimes in about this Amagansett CSA and features the documentary ‘Out Here in the Fields’ by Alec Hirschfeld. A little more Alec…

  • Here’s The Thing on WNYC hosted by Alec Baldwin is our favorite podcast: entertaining, intelligent and Alec’s is simply the best voice on the net! 
  • The Alec Baldwin Show If your a fan of Alec at the HIFF ‘A Conversation With’ watch his show – ‘unfiltered & provocative’
Scott Chasky of Quail Hill Farm

Scott Chasky of Quail Hill Farm

Please send me your thoughts, a picture, or a question. We invite you to come experience invisible green with us. 

Call us or email us to book your stay

It’s been my pleasure,

– Gary

The post Thanksgiving in the Hamptons 2019 appeared first on Mill House Inn.

On Surfing and Plastics and Our Oceans 9 Oct 2019, 11:00 am

Surf Camp East End

Surf Camp East End


In April 2019, Gary wrote the 4th in a Series of Blogs on Surfing: ‘Make Mine a Glenmorangie Neat, Water Back.’ In it he highlighted the commendable work being done by 4Ocean – Andrew and Alex’s epic quest to clean the world’s oceans of plastics. 

  • Thinking about holiday shopping yet? 
  • Think about buying 4Ocean Bracelets for everyone on your list to help clean up our oceans! 
  • Gary’s favorite is the Manatee…
Manatee Bracelet from 4Ocean

Manatee Bracelet from 4Ocean


Yesterday I received an email from Julia at, a website advocating ‘Ocean Friendly Snorkeling,’ who had read our blog and wondered if we might link to her article on plastics’ threat to the oceans and what you can do about it. This is, indeed, ‘one of the most in-depth articles about how plastics are expected to outweigh fish in our oceans by 2050 and what we can do about the plastics problem in our daily lives.’ Julia Wilburn

Coral Reef, Courtesy of

Coral Reef, Courtesy of

I highly recommend that you read this article and take it very seriously. Yes, we can help save the world!

  1. Reduce Plastic Use
  2. Help Clean the Trash
  3. Reuse & Recycle
Marine Garbage Debris, Courtesy of

Marine Garbage Debris, Courtesy of

‘With plastics threatening to outweigh the fish in the ocean, the situation can easily get out of hand and result in a catastrophe. Gathering all garbage from the waters is hard, but all it takes is a small behavioral change to reduce the accumulation of waste. 

The future of this planet, the wellbeing of our wildlife, and ultimately our wellbeing as a species is in our hands. 

Whether you decide to use less plastic items or not is down to you, but remember that using plastics and disposing of them improperly could mean much more than a dead fish or seagull. It could potentially mean our extinction.’ snorkelsandfins

The Plastic You Use Once Tortures the Oceans Forever, Courtesy of snorkelsandfins.comThe Plastic You Use Once Tortures the Oceans Forever, Courtesy of

The Plastic You Use Once Tortures the Oceans Forever, Courtesy of

For the complete article please visit: 

Plastics Will Outweigh Fish in The Ocean: 
How Does It Affect You and What Should You Do?

Thanks, Sylvia

East Hampton Main Beach

East Hampton Main Beach

The post On Surfing and Plastics and Our Oceans appeared first on Mill House Inn.